Macedonian Healthcare Minister Venko Filipce opened the possibility of purchasing the Russian Sputnik coronavirus vaccine. Macedonia was unable to sign a commercial contract with Pfizer and so far has only received a small donation from Serbia, forcing Filipce and Zoran Zaev to turn to China, after initially insisting that they will only purchase Western manufactured vaccines. Last month the Russian Embassy in Macedonia announced that it has been in contact with the Government early this year and offered the Sputnik vaccine, but never heard back.

There is no politics in vaccinations. That is exclusively an issue of studies and certificates. Pfizer was ahead in its clinical trials and that is why we began talks with them. At the time when we were contacted by the Embassy, Sputnik V was still in the third stage of studies. The process wasn’t completed yet. We have no problems purchasing that vaccine, no politics there, Filipce insisted.

Macedonia currently awaits 200,000 doses of the Chinese vaccine, and hopes to sign a contract with Pfizer soon, while some token immunization will be performed with the almost 5,000 Pfizer vaccines donated by Serbia.